Kate Burton will be a girl with a gripe and a gun come June 21, when she assumes the title role in Ibsen's Hedda Gabler, Bay Street Theatre's second offering of the season. The drama, adapted by Jon Robin Baitz, is a co-production with the Williamstown Theatre Festival. Nicholas Martin (Betty's Summer Vacation) directs.
Burton was recently seen Off-Broadway in Brian Friel's Give Me Your Answer, Do!. Prior to that, she acted in Broadway's The Beauty Queen of Leenane. The actress has familial connections to both Williamstown and Bay Street. Michael Ritchie, artistic director of the Williamstown Theatre Festival, is Burton's husband. Sybil Christopher, co- artistic of Bay Street, was the first wife of Richard Burton, Kate's father.
Michael Emerson, best known as Oscar Wilde in Gross Indecency, but also boasting such credits as The Iceman Cometh and Give Me Your Answer, Do! (with Burton), will play Hedda's ineffectual husband, George Tesman. Harris Yulin, most recently on Broadway in The Price, will be the imperious Judge Brack. Katie Finneran, a cast-mate of Emerson's in The Iceman Cometh will be Mrs. Elvsted, while David Lansbury will by Eilert Lovborg. Completing the cast are Kathryn Hahn and Angela Thornton.
* The Bay Street season also includes the musical Love, Janis, featuring the songs of Janis Joplin, July 19-Aug. 6; and Kaufman and Hart's comedy You Can't Take It With You. Jack Hofsiss (The Elephant Man) will helm the latter play, which runs Aug. 16-Sept. 3.
The Ibsen and Kaufman and Hart revivals mark a new direction for the Bay Street, which has, until now, focuses primarily on new plays and American premieres. A Bay Street spokesman said the theatre had made a conscious choice to stage more classics, in part was responding to the desires of its audience. Bay Street will also introduce a "Tuesday Talkback Series" in 2000. The program will allow subscribers to meet and chat with actors, directors, playwrights and designers involved in the theatre's productions.
The Bay Street Theatre in located in Sag Harbor, Long Island. For information call (631) 725-9500, or consult the website at www.baystreet.com.